Developing entrepreneurship ecosystems - An explorative case study on the main Helsinki area

No Thumbnail Available
Journal Title
Journal ISSN
Volume Title
School of Business | Master's thesis
Degree programme
Entrepreneurship and Innovation Management
Entrepreneurship ecosystem research has been the target of momentous attention in recent years. Despite this, the field is still in its nascent stages. There is currently no consensus on the theoretical foundation of the concept or its associated research methodology. Ecosystem research is further complicated by the nature of each ecosystem as a unique, highly contextual phenomenon that is dependent on its historical development path, which is irreversible and cannot be copied to other ecosystems. The current scholarly consensus calls for more empirical data to support theory-building. The aim of this thesis is to generate data to support entrepreneurship ecosystem research and practical development by policy-makers and other stakeholders. This study consists of interviews with five key experts in the ecosystem. The aim of the interviews is to provide information on the main Helsinki area entrepreneurship ecosystem and efficient ways to develop it, especially regarding its smart & clean sector. Smart & clean is a recent abbreviation of smart cities & cleantech. The main theoretical contribution of the study is that the two factors of ecosystem resilience, diversity and coherence, appear to have a more complex relationship than that identified by extant literature. The study also questions past advice to focus on temporary projects in ecosystem development. Analysis of the findings discovers five important areas of development for the main Helsinki area entrepreneurship ecosystem, and equally many potentially valuable avenues for future research. Ecosystem development was desired in the areas of coherence, ongoing business development support, modernization of public procurement practices to be more friendly towards startups and small enterprises, and by renewing the financial instruments of ecosystem development. The study finds avenues for further research in the relationship of diversity and coherence, forms of ongoing business development support, understanding the impact of and potentially viable business models for accelerators and incubators, startup-friendly and ecosystem-friendly public purchasing processes and financial instruments designed to support ecosystem development.
Thesis advisor
Gartner, Johannes
entrepreneurship ecosystem, entrepreneurial ecosystem, cleantech, startups, ecosystems
Other note